Advent Week Two: “Exchanging Harm for Peace”
Weekly Supply List:
- Journal or sketch pad
- Pen, pencil, or markers
- Your imagination
- 5-10 minutes a day
- Advent wreath, optional
Weekly Scripture: Isaiah 11:1-10 (Good News Translation)
1 The royal line of David is like a tree that has been cut down; but just as new branches sprout from a stump, so a new king will arise from among David’s descendants. 2 The spirit of the Lord will give him wisdom and the knowledge and skill to rule his people. He will know the Lord’s will and honor him, 3 and find pleasure in obeying him. He will not judge by appearance or hearsay; 4 he will judge the poor fairly and defend the rights of the helpless. At his command the people will be punished, and evil persons will die. 5 He will rule his people with justice and integrity. 6 Wolves and sheep will live together in peace, and leopards will lie down with young goats. Calves and lion cubs will feed together, and little children will take care of them. 7 Cows and bears will eat together, and their calves and cubs will lie down in peace. Lions will eat straw as cattle do. 8 Even a baby will not be harmed if it plays near a poisonous snake. 9 On Zion, God’s sacred hill, there will be nothing harmful or evil. The land will be as full of knowledge of the Lord as the seas are full of water. 10 A day is coming when the new king from the royal line of David will be a symbol to the nations. They will gather in his royal city and give him honor.
Invitation: Get some supplies–a journal or piece of paper and something to write with. Find a comfy seat and have one person read Isaiah 11:1-10, written above, out loud and slowly.
Reflection: Isaiah lists several animals that don’t tend to get along: wolves hunt sheep; young goats are afraid of leopards; calves and lion cubs don’t play together; a bear would probably hurt a cow. Can you think of other animals that don’t get along.
Contemplation: Isaiah says that when this new King comes to power, that there will no longer be anything harmful or evil. How does this make you feel? What exciting thing would you do if you knew that nothing would try to hurt you?
Discussion: It’s not only animals that don’t get along–sometimes people are meaner to each other than animals are. What people can you think of that don’t get along? What might King Jesus want to do for them?
Prayer Exchange: Take a few deep breaths as you stretch your arms out wide–like you’re trying to wrap them around the whole world. Stay like this while some says this prayer:
King Jesus, you are the Prince of Peace. Peace is the only way you know how to rule. Thank you that one day your power will end all violence, strife, hatred, and fear. Teach us how to love others instead of fear them, how to show them kindness instead of hurting them, so that we might be called children of God. Amen.
Contributed by Rodger Otero, Associate Pastor